News Update: 9th October 2012

WELCOME to the Family Lore News Update.

Judge rules devout Muslim man with severe brain damage should not be resuscitated
A High Court Judge ruled that a devout Muslim man with severe brain damage should not be resuscitated even though he accepts it is his wish to be kept alive. Full story: The Telegraph.

Cafcass care demand statistics September 2012
Between April and September 2012 Cafcass received a total of 5,374 applications.

Married couples 'will be in the minority by 2050'
The Centre for Social Justice has criticised the Government’s “failure” to do more to tackle family breakdown. Full story: The Telegraph.

Gay marriage backed by George Osborne and William Hague
The foreign secretary and chancellor have both said they will back the introduction of same-sex marriage when MPs are given a free vote on the issue. Full story: BBC News.

End of easy credit could be slowing divorce rate, lawyer says
The end of the age of “easy credit” could have helped slow the rise in the divorce rate by making it harder for angry partners to call in lawyers, a leading barrister has suggested.

Father has no 'sacred right’ over education of children, rules judge
The days are gone when fathers held exclusive power over their children’s education, a judge ruled yesterday in rejecting the objections of an ultra-orthodox Jewish father to his ex-wife’s choice of schools for their children. The Re G case - see below. Full story: The Telegraph.

Four sisters in Australian Hague Convention case must return to Italy
The four Italian/Australian sisters, who have been the subject of a high profile Hague Convention case in Australia, have been ordered to return to Italy. Full story: Family Law Week.

The Child Maintenance and Other Payments Act 2008 (Commencement No. 9) and the Welfare Reform Act 2009 (Commencement No. 9) Order 2012
This Order brings into force provisions of the Child Maintenance and Other Payments Act 2008 (c. 6) and the Welfare Reform Act 2009 (c. 24).

SK, Re [2012] EWHC 1990 (COP) (09 July 2012)
Adult man mentally incapacitated after being struck by a bus. Application by man's brother and bus company (parties to personal injury proceedings) to be joined in Court of Protection proceedings. Application by brother granted, but by bus company refused. Full report: Bailii.

G (Children), Re [2012] EWCA Civ 1233 (04 October 2012)
Appeal by father against residence order and direction regarding the children's education, in case where the family were part of a Chassidic Jewish Community. Appeal dismissed. Full report: Bailii. See also Marilyn Stowe's blog post, below.

The NHS Trust v D [2012] EWHC 886 (COP) (17 April 2011)
Declarations made regarding withdrawal of treatment form a patient, on the application of NHS Trust (see next case). Application by Official Solicitor for order that Trust pay half his costs. Direction made in those terms. Full report: Bailii.

D, Re [2012] EWHC 885 (COP) (23 March 2012)
Application by NHS Trust for a declaration that it is lawful and in the best interests of a man in a permanent vegetative state to withdraw active medical treatment. Declaration granted. Full report: Bailii.

M (Children) [2012] EWHC 1948 (Fam) (12 July 2012)
Application for a transfer of residence by the father, in circumstances where the mother had been obstructing contact. Order made for staying contact, with the proviso that if the contact does not take place, the father shall be granted residence. Full report: Bailii. See also my blog post, below.

AA (A child), Re [2012] EWHC 2647 (Fam) (temporary reference)
Fact-finding hearing in case where local authority contended that the mother neglected her children and that she was responsible for the deaths of two children by smothering. Neglect found, but smothering allegation not proved. Full report: Bailii. See also the blog post by suesspiciousminds, below.

Finance & Divorce October 2012 Update
Anna Heenan and Nicola Rowlings, both of Mills & Reeve LLP, analyse September’s financial remedies and divorce news and cases. Full article: Family Law Week.

A Life in the UK Care System - Should the process be quicker?
"Whilst I appreciate that children need decisions made as to their long term care arrangements as quickly as possible, that has to be balanced with their right to enjoy a family life with their biological family." Says Kirsty Richards in Family Law.

Equal civil marriage - death or disappearance of spouse overseas
"A particular problem to be considered in drafting equal civil marriage legislation is the fact that whatever arrangements are made for the UK, same-sex marriages performed here will not be recognised in most countries of the world." Says Barry Crown in the Law Society Gazette.

Defining violence needs government commitment
"Positive developments must be met by a commitment from the government to support victims of domestic violence who come forward", says Baroness Scotland QC, in the Law Society Gazette.

A father’s rights?
"Last week the Court of Appeal was the venue for a stark clash of cultures. On the one side stood members of the Haredi Jewish Community and on the other stood 21st Century secular Britain." Says Marilyn Stowe, discussing the Re G case, above.

Practice directions make perfect?
"Some consultation documents for new family law practice directions have flitted across my inbox today." Says suesspiciousminds in this post.

Passing the prior authority parcel
Suesspiciousminds discusses an ALC proposal to tackle the problems caused by the decision of the LSC to not grant prior authority for cases any more.

and said ‘oh oh, smother me mother’
A consideration of AA (A Child) 2012 EWHC 2647 (Fam) [above] by suesspiciousminds (who apologises for the post title).

M (Children): Use of a conditional residence order where contact obstructed
A discussion of M (Children) [2012] EWHC 1948 (Fam) [above], which involved the making of a conditional residence order in favour of the father, in circumstances where the mother had been obstructing contact. Full post: Family Lore.


  1. So married couples will be in the minority by 2050.

    This is a bad state of affairs for whom exactly?

    I wonder how long it will take many of the parties to the forthcoming gay marriages to realise that perhaps it wasn't such a great deal after all.

    My guess is that they will come to that conclusion long before 2050.

    If they don't,they will be in the strange position of having rescued a religious institution that seems to have fought pretty hard to exclude them.


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